Google-owned video portal YouTube is expanding its push into premium original content with seven star-studded unscripted series.
YouTube’s slate of ad-supported original digital series will be made available free to its users and feature such celebrities as Kevin Hart (pictured), Ellen DeGeneres, Katy Perry, The Slow Mo Guys, Demi Lovato, Ludacris and Rhett and Link.
Unscripted series include Ellen’s Show Me More Show, a twice-a-week series providing behind-the-scenes access to some of the biggest stars and Ellen’s favorite moments; Kevin Hart: What the Fit?, a weekly series featuring the comedian and his celebrity friends attempting to master various workout routines; I Am: Demi Lovato, in which the musician reveals a year-long personal journey while recording her latest album; and Good Mythical Morning, featuring YouTube influnencers Rhett & Link.
Further series coming to the digital platform include the previously announced Best.Cover.Ever. from Ryan Seacrest Productions and Endemol Shine North America; The Super Slow Show, in which slow motion technology is used to reinvent the way we look at celebrities, music, pranks and comedy sketches; and Katy Perry Live Special, providing an intimate look into the songstress on the eve of her highly anticipated album launch.
“We’re thrilled to announce that beginning later this year, some of the biggest YouTube creators and Hollywood names will be featured in seven new series on YouTube — bringing more can’t-get-enough-of and can’t-find-anywhere-else shows to everyone, everywhere,” said Robert Kyncl, YouTube’s chief business officer, in a statement. “With these new shows, brands can be a part of content that’s generating buzz around the world.”
“We’re excited to partner with top creators and world-class production companies to offer these new shows to audiences globally—on the platform where the world chooses to watch over a billion hours of video every day,” he added. “People turn to YouTube to express themselves, engage with creators, and connect with the thriving communities they’re proud to be a part of. This vibrant fan and creator community is also why brands turn to YouTube.”
The news marks YouTube’s latest drive into the original content market, having launched YouTube Red, a paid membership service, in with Endemol Shine North America’s singing series The Keys of Christmas. The premium service has since released an additional 30 series and movies in just over a year.
YouTube made further inroads into the television industry with its launch of subscription service YouTube TV, providing access to more than 50 channels, from ESPN to NBC.